Are certain diuretics also anticonvulsants?
Article first published online: 10 AUG 2001
Copyright © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Annals of Neurology
Volume 50, Issue 4, pages 458–462, October 2001
How to Cite
Hesdorffer, D. C., Stables, J. P., Hauser, W. A., Annegers, J. F. and Cascino, G. (2001), Are certain diuretics also anticonvulsants?. Ann Neurol., 50: 458–462. doi: 10.1002/ana.1136
- Issue published online: 8 OCT 2001
- Article first published online: 10 AUG 2001
- Manuscript Accepted: 24 MAY 2001
- Manuscript Revised: 23 MAY 2001
- Manuscript Received: 14 MAR 2001
- National Institute of Neurologic Diseases and Stroke. Grant Number: NS16308
- National Institutes of Health. Grant Numbers: AR30582, M01RR00645
- Epilepsy Foundation of America
A history of diuretic use has been shown to be protective for first unprovoked seizure in adult patients. Recent animal studies suggest that certain diuretics have anticonvulsant activity. We evaluated the potential for the anticonvulsant activity of current diuretic use in a population-based, case–control study in older adults. We also tested chlorthiazide and furosemide for seizure protection in animal models of epilepsy. Concurrent medical prescription of any diuretic was protective for the development of epilepsy [odds ratio (OR) = 0.62, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.39–0.99]. A protective effect for current thiazide use was observed (OR = 0.53, CI = 0.31–0.90), and a protective effect for furosemide was suggested (OR = 0.44, CI = 0.1–1.9). In mice, both chlorthiazide and furosemide suppressed the occurrence of maximal electroshock-induced seizures in a dose-dependent manner. Chlorthiazide's toxic dose for 50% of animals tested (TD50) could not be achieved even with dosing as high as 1,500 mg/kg; for furosemide, TD50 was 549 mg/kg. Results were similar in rats. Furosemide and chlorthiazide are protective for unprovoked seizures in an epidemiological study and in animal models. Given the potential therapeutic value for seizure control, low toxicity, and low cost, therapeutic efficacy should be explored in clinical studies.